If 2 unmarried people have their name on the deed to a property together and 1 person wants to sell but the other does not, can the sale be forced?

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If 2 unmarried people have their name on the deed to a property together and 1 person wants to sell but the other does not, can the sale be forced?

We both have our names on the deed of the property. What kind of rights to sell does either party have without the others needed consent?

Asked on August 1, 2018 under Real Estate Law, North Carolina

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it can. The owner who wants to sell can file for a "partition". In a partiton action, the property will be ordered to be divided if possible. If not possible, such as in the case of a single family house, the court will instead order a "sale in lieu of partition". Accordingly, the property will be put on the market and sold for fair market value and the proceeds will be distributed equitably. However, before the property is offered to 3rd parties, the owner who wants to keep the property can buy out the other owner (for fair market value). At this point, you should consult directly with a local real estate lawyer.

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it can. The owner who wants to sell can file for a "partition". In a partiton action, the property will be ordered to be divided if possible. If not possible, such as in the case of a single family house, the court will instead order a "sale in lieu of partition". Accordingly, the property will be put on the market and sold for fair market value and the proceeds will be distributed equitably. However, before the property is offered to 3rd parties, the owner who wants to keep the property can buy out the other owner (for fair market value). At this point, you should consult directly with a local real estate lawyer.


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